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Is Congress Poised to Tell Obama “No” on Syria?

The following is an excerpt of Kevin Price’s latest column in the Huffington Post:

President Obama has rarely had problems making unilateral decisions. In fact, he has been more than willing to implement policies even after they were overturned by another branch of government. Furthermore, he has also allowed agencies to do things in disregard of Congressional oversight. We have even seen this in his military decisions as well, with the indiscriminate use of drones and other actions, without the approval and with little consultation from Congress.

ImageThe “drum beat” for military action has been loud since it became clear that Syria used chemical weapons on its own people, including hundreds of babies and children. David Cameron, the UK Prime Minister and the United States’ strongest ally, called for a special session of Parliament and the members voted against military action. This was shocking and a blow to Cameron’s leadership. Meanwhile, France has said it is going to support military action against Syria. President Obama has said that it is “imperative” for the U.S. to attack or we can expect more heinous actions on the part of the Syrian regime. Now, in what could be seen as a “reversal” for a man who has rarely been interested in the legislative branch and its opinions, Obama is not only consulting Congress on the issue of Syria, but asking for them to vote on it.

Political observers are going to be asking questions. Is the president looking for an excuse not to act? Will a negative vote from Congress become grounds for inaction? This is unlikely, because he indicated that there would be action regardless of the vote, but it could significantly affect what that action looks like. Remember, George Bush asked Congress to vote on the automobile industry bailout, they did with a resounding “no” and Bush authorized it anyway with TARP dollars. Actions such as these are often more show than substance. Will a vote in favor of military action lead to more drastic actions by the United States? We will have to wait and see.

If Congress authorizes action, the American people will certainly be more supportive and the president will also be seen as having had “matured” in his decision making. But if the president goes to Congress and they vote “no” and he proceeds with action (as it appears likely), I expect a fairly loud outcry and even more cynicism towards our government and its leaders. A vote supporting the president is anything but guaranteed. The American people have grown tired of war, this includes… (read more)

Kevin Price on Innovative Consulting Firm With Ivy MBAs

Excerpt from a recent column in Huffington Post:

Small businesses make up half of the GDP of the U.S. However, the country’s confidence is at historic lows. Adding new hires is risky, regulations are burdensome, and few want to make substantial financial commitments to growth that may never materialize. Across the country, smaller companies have begun to rely increasingly on outsourced labor — not only for the mundane call center and computer programming functions, but also for higher level strategic guidance. The Boston-based HourlyNerd is one such company that is exploiting this trend.

head shot on meThis group of young entrepreneurs are overflowing with confidence and their assessment of the company and its future abounds with optimism.

Founded in February of 2013 for a class project by a team of Harvard Business School students, HourlyNerd pairs top-quality MBAs with small businesses to provide, what they describe as “low-priced, flexible consulting, financial and accounting advice by the hour.” Since starting earlier this year they have “seen more than 300 businesses register for their site and have signed up more than 875 MBAs,” according to a statement. Example projects have included (among others) market entry analysis, business plan creations, and financial modeling; the Nerds also say they are on the verge of launching a co-marketing agreement with a top global technology firm. “We delight our customers because we offer them exceptional value. Our ‘Nerds’ cost about $35-50/hour. It’s very difficult to find freelancers for under $100-150, and honestly, the quality cannot compare. And McKinsey and Bain & Co. are obviously way too expensive for these businesses.” says founder and co-CEO Rob Biederman, age 26.

What kind of projects have Nerds done for these businesses? “Honestly, they run the gamut,” says founder and COO Joe Miller, 27. “We’ve helped an Australian manufacturing firm size various Southeast Asian markets…(read more)

Kevin Price’s Latest from the Huffington Post: NMX Expo

Kevin Price’s column from the Huffington Post:

New media is hardly a “new thing,” yet events like the NMX Expo (January 5 to 8, 2013 in Las Vegas, NV) continue to attract huge numbers as they seek to learn and understand all the opportunities available in new media. In particular, discovering how these media converge is paramount.

NMX is the largest conference in the world geared specifically to bloggers, podcasters, web TV content creators, social media enthusiasts and, according to its website, “all new media content creators.” What may be most crucial in regards to the event is that NMX helps people to understand how these media can support one another. Also, according to the site, “Besides learning from the very best speakers and educators in their respective fields, NMX is also THE place for everyone in new media, from beginners to seasoned veterans, to network, share ideas and take their online content to new heights.”

For a little bit of its history, Co-Founders Rick Calvert and Dave Cynkin began NMX (formerly BlogWorld & New Media Expo) in 2007 as a way to bring the content creator community together for networking and sharing ideas with other like-minded people in new media. In recent years it has become a way for those in business to learn how to better leverage… (read more)